Keyword research is a necessary task in PPC, but luckily, there’s lots of great tools out there to make us more productive. Whether you’re new in the industry or just need some reminders, here’s just a couple of my favorite tools to utilize when I’m working on keyword research.
Google Keyword Planner
This is one of the first tools that I used when I started working on keyword expansion. In case you’re not familiar with this tool, you can look up new keywords, multiply keyword lists, get search data like volume & trends, & get forecasts for clicks & cost. I like that it offers all of these options in one tool. I have found that sometimes the stats side of things can be a little off, so I don’t recommend looking up long-tail keywords or geographically-specific keywords. However, for keyword research, it’ll give you great ideas!
This is a paid service, but I find it incredibly useful because I can find competitors, see what paid keywords your competitors are bidding on, what their ads look like and see what keywords you’re missing. One of my favorite features is the “Kombat” feature (available for PPC research or organic), which allows you to see how you overlap with competitors with a nice Venn diagram where all of you overlap as well as where you competitors overlap (AKA: the keywords you really want).
In addition to paid keyword research and competitor research, you can also see your competitors’ organic rankings and keywords.
SEM Rush Keyword Tool
I like the interface that SEMRush offers – It’s a lot of colorful charts all on one page which makes it easy to navigate.
You can get a good handle on your competitors’ organic results, paid search efforts, backlinks and display advertising with this tool. The basic version is free, but if you want more you’ll have to get a Pro account.
Google & Bing’s Opportunities Tab
These are customized list of opportunities for your existing accounts. Both can tell you how to adjust your keywords into new ad groups, suggestions on keywords to add, and keywords that could use a bid boost to increase performance. If you don’t already use it, this is a good tab to check in with every once in a while.
As for keyword research, I have gotten some pretty obscure suggestions before, but I have also gotten some great suggestions, as well so be sure to give these suggestions a good look over before implementing. In addition to telling you how many more clicks and impressions you could get, it also gives you an average of the increase your budget would see by adding the keywords. If you’re just looking for suggestions on one or two campaigns instead of the entire account, don’t forget to filter the results.
In Google, you click the Campaigns drop down to find the campaigns in which you’re interested.
In Bing, this can be done by clicking “Filter” on the left in the Opportunities tab.
This is just a sampling of all the keyword research tools out there. Share your favorites in the comments, we’d love to hear them!